Sure, many things annoy me: my amazingly talented dog Pepper peeing my bed the day I wash the sheets, my lunch falling splat on the floor, the cancellation of 'Pushing Daisies' (that one still gets my goat two years later). These are the sorts of things that I can brush off.
But truly, it takes great skill to make me uncontrollably, blusteringly angry; among them, hypocrisy, intolerance, and Lady Gaga's "Born This Way."
Oh yes, brava, Lady Gaga. Brava.
There are times, however, in which my own anger will lash out with a great dragon lady furor that surprises even me. Might I add that this sort of anger fails to intimidate. People usually laugh.
My display this evening is a great example of both these things.
As I was driving home this evening, "dee dee dee" blithely minding my own business, I find myself pulling up next to a tin lunch box of a truck. Suddenly, in one of those moments when you nearly soil yourself because you forsee the doom that is about to occur, that little metal truck veers sharply into my lane out of nowhere, forcing me to wrench my precious ass off the road. And then off he goes, ZOOM!
I was infuriated. Sonofagun nearly killed me for no apparent reason. And dammit, I told myself, am I going to give him a piece of my mind.
So I floored the gas pedal and sped up next to him, rationalizing the whole way with feverish intensity that this poor excuse of a driver needed to know what he had done. My plan was to honk and to yell at him through my closed, sound-proof window. He would heed my anger and repent.
I pulled up next to him, laid on the horn with my mighty hand, and, without even thinking, flipped him the bird.
Ladies & Gents, let me assure you that me giving you a solid "F--- you" with my rather bony and angular finger would make you laugh, given the intensity with which I would mean it. I think once you would get over the shock of ME flipping you off you would laugh heartily. Typically, this is why I avoid using such a gesture. It's laughable, awkward, and a tad shocking.
Dude wasn't even looking.
So not only was my anger completely pointless, as most anger generally is, but then I was left with the guilt of maliciously making an obscene gesture towards my fellow man, as initially unintentional as it was.
I think the severity of flipping the bird tends to be lost on my generation. My thoughts immediately drifted to an episode of "Law and Order: SVU" in which an elderly lady enters a confessional to tell the priest that, among her sins, she was guilty of "flipping my neighbor the boid." Then, of course, when the priest doesn't answer she looks over and finds him dead in the confessional booth. Grim, I know.
For some reason, I think that scene has always kept me from giving the finger willy nilly until now. Not because a priest died but because...you know what? Nevermind. It left an impression.
No more "flipping the boid" for me, folks.
So if that reckless driver who almost killed me but didn't could know one thing right now, it would be this: Thanks for making me look like a crazy woman driver.
I think Jo Koy says it best: